Cerebral, the controversial telemedicine mental health startup, filed a lawsuit in New York on Monday alleging that founder Kyle Robertson never paid back a nearly $50 million loan that the company owed. you lent him.
Cerebral alleges that it lent Robertson $49,768,453.79 on January 24, 2022, allowing him to purchase nearly 1.06 million shares of Cerebral stock. According to a filing filed with the New York State Supreme Court for the District of New York, Cerebral accuses Robertson of being liable for more than $25 million or 51% of the loan’s principal amount, plus interest and attorneys’ fees. .
The company alleges Robertson must pay off the loan if his term as CEO ends for any reason within six months of that termination date. Robertson was fired from the company in mid-May after being criticized over the startup’s ADHD prescribing practices, including three lawsuits by former employees and one federal investigation.
Cerebral alleges that after Robertson ceased to be CEO, he said he would not repay the loan.
Robertson did not respond to a request for comment. Neither a spokesperson for Cerebral nor the attorney representing the company were immediately available for comment.
The filing follows a letter Robertson sent last week asking for access to company records ahead of a potential lawsuit. In the letter, Robertson alleges that the company’s investors pushed him to sell controlled drugs to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and then used him as a scapegoat in the wake of the scandal. public criticism.
Last week, the company’s CEO, Dr David Mou, said he was not focused on the scathing letter sent by Robertson, his former colleague, to the company’s executive team and investors. .
“It was a distraction. I’m looking forward,” Mou said in an interview at the HLTH conference in Las Vegas. “I am here to take care of our patients.”
The contents of Robertson’s letter were first reported by Business Insider.
A spokesperson for Cerebral said the claims made by Robertson were untrue and that the company intends to defend itself vigorously should a complaint be filed.
Since Robertson’s departure, the US Federal Trade Commission is said to have sent a letter to Cerebral request information about whether the company will continue to charge patients even after they have attempted to unsubscribe.
Amid the controversy, the company stopped prescribing Adderall and Ritalin in May. At the time Mou said he is saddened by the decision, as he considers them a legitimate first-line treatment for patients with ADHD. Mou said Cerebral still prescribes suboxone, a controlled substance for opioid use disorder.
This story first appeared in Technology & Business Digital Health.